In Paris, a gargoyle on Notre Dame

The Hottest Association Destinations: ICCA’s Ranking Is Out

The 196 international association meetings that said oui to Paris in 2016 have put the city in the top spot this year in the annual ranking tabulated by the International Congress and Convention Association. ICCA captured destination information on 12,212 rotating international association meetings held in 2016 and ranked cities and countries based on the number of those meetings they hosted.

European cities—Paris, Vienna, Barcelona, Berlin, and London—held onto the top five spots again this year. Notably, however, Berlin dropped back to fourth place, where it had sat for several years before last year’s jump to number-one.

Bangkok and Dublin continue their rise as association meeting hot spots. Bangkok has gone from number 29 on the city ranking in 2014, to number 16 in 2015, to number 12 this year. Similarly, Dublin has climbed from number 24 to number 18 to number 13 this year. Another city of note is Amsterdam, which moved up five spots on the 2016 ranking to share the 7th place position with Madrid.

In the country rankings for 2016, the U.S. continued to dominate as a destination for international association meetings, hosting 245 more meetings than the next closest country. Next on the list were Germany, United Kingdom, France, Spain, and Italy, respectfully. That is the same as in 2015, except that France and Spain swapped positions.

Interestingly, Poland and Argentina are now ranked 17th and 19th, respectively, as they pushed Demark and Turkey off the top 20 list. Brazil, perhaps not surprisingly because of the Zika virus, dropped from number 11 to number 15, holding 48 fewer international association meetings in 2016 than in 2015.

Top 15 cities for international association meetings in 2016 (number of meetings)
1. Paris (196)
2. Vienna (186)
3. Barcelona (181)
4. Berlin (176)
5. London (153)
6. Singapore (151)
7. Amsterdam (144)
7. Madrid (144)
9. Lisbon (138)
10. Seoul (137)
11. Prague (126)
12. Bangkok (121)
13. Dublin (118)
14. Copenhagen (115)
15. Beijing (113)

Top 15 countries for international association meetings in 2016 (number of meetings)
1. U.S.A. (934)
2. Germany (689)
3. United Kingdom (582)
4. France (545)
5. Spain (533)
6. Italy (468)
7. China-P.R. (410)
7. Japan (410)
9. Netherlands (368)
10. Canada (287)
10. Portugal (287)
12. Austria (268)
13. Republic of Korea (267)
14. Sweden (260)
15. Brazil (244)

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